A 22-year-old youth Subhasis Das alias Suvo was arrested late Monday night in connection with the abduction and murder of the class X student at Haridevpur.
The body of the 14-year-old Bittu Das without trousers and shoes was found in a narrow lane behind his house at around 11.30 pm. on Sunday a few hours after his parents had received a ransom call demanding Rs 50,000.
The accused has been produced before the Alipore Court and he was remanded in the custody of the police till March 7.
Police said that the accused, who is a neighbour of the victim, confessed that he had abducted Bittu as he needed money for operation on his left eye.
The investigating officers are, however, not ready to believe his claims and at the same time not ruling out the possibility of sexual harassment on the victim before he was killed.
Sources said that the accused told the police that the boy was shouting and twice tried to run out of the place where he had kept him after kidnapping.
A police officer said that during interrogation the accused said: “Bittu suffocated when I covered his face to restrict him from shouting and he fell on the ground as soon as I released him but he did not make any movement. I understood that he was dead and dumped him in the narrow lane when everyone was busy searching for him near a pond in the locality.”
“It’s true that the financial condition of the accused’s family is not that stable. His mother works as a domestic help and he is a mobile phone mechanic.
But it doesn’t means he had abducted the boy just for money,” said a police officer adding that they are yet to get the post-mortem report but the preliminary investigation suggests that he was killed ahead of making the first call for ransom.
Moreover, the possibility of sexual assault on the victim cannot be ruled out as his trousers were not there when the body was found and there were severe injuries almost all over his body. Such injuries are not possible if the accused had just tried to cover his face with his hands to restrict him from shouting, the police said.
The police had also picked up three more youth in this connection.
But they were released after interrogation. The police are waiting for the post-mortem report and the exact motive behind the crime can be ascertained once the police receive the report.
A senior police officer said: “It is important to know the time when the boy was killed and thus the post-mortem report is crucial.”
Police also spoke to the victim’s parents and neighbours to know whether they had seen the accused speaking to Bittu earlier.